Daily Archives: September 13, 2017

Room Scheduling Updates: Group study rooms, Foster Auditorium

horizontal image with calendar icon, text "Reserve a Group Study Room" with URL libraries.psu.edu/studyrooms for online reservations and URL for additional details at https://libraries.psu.edu/services/rooms-spaces

Updated Reserve a Group Study Room business-size promotional cards, posters and social media graphics help promote the new URL redirect — https://libraries.psu.edu/studyrooms — which goes to the LibCal system and is available to implement across all Libraries locations with group study rooms.

All Penn State students now can schedule library group study rooms through a single online system,  and soon faculty and staff will see updates to how they request use of Foster Auditorium and what expectations the Libraries has for its use.

Group study rooms now reserved via LibCal
At the start of the fall 2017 semester, the Libraries began using a new room reservation system for students booking library group study rooms. The previous system, EMS, was replaced by LibCal (Springshare’s Equipment & Spaces module) at the end of the spring 2017 semester.

Ann Thompson, the Libraries’ LibCal product owner, worked with I-Tech and ITS to enable student users to access the reservation system using their Penn State credentials without creating an account, an improvement over previous requirements. As before, students can book group study rooms for up to three hours per day and two weeks in advance.

Students at all Libraries locations with group study rooms eventually will be able to use the same online system for reservations. Currently, students at Altoona, Beaver, Berks, Harrisburg, University Park and York are using LibCal for group study room reservations. The system is set up in 15-minute intervals with a booking default to a three-hour reservation, and students can easily change the length of time while making reservations.

LibCal sends a confirmation email to the student containing the reservation information as well as a link to cancel their booking. Online reservations can be made only by students at https://libraries.psu.edu/studyrooms.

Updates coming to Foster Auditorium request procedure and expectations for use
In other scheduling news, the Libraries soon will begin using the CollegeNET platform to schedule Foster Auditorium for both internal Libraries use and for external requests. Currently in the midst of a transitional phase toward full use by June 2018, CollegeNET is being implemented for event management use University-wide and already is being used for academic (classroom) scheduling at all campuses.

In recent months, a working group under the leadership of Associate Dean Anne Langley has been working on an update to Guideline UL-ADG03, “Use of Foster Auditorium.” The group, including Thompson, Emma Davidson, Athena Jackson, Rebecca Miller and Jill Shockey, has clarified priority uses, limitations/expectations and procedures for requesting and advertising use of the space. It is anticipated to be reviewed and approved at an upcoming Dean’s Library Council meeting.

The revised guideline has been updated to give external requesters a better understanding of Foster Auditorium’s primary purpose — for Libraries events, teaching and training — and outlines the Libraries’ expectations and best practices for its use.

Following the updated guideline’s approval, a date will be announced after which all requests for using Foster Auditorium must be submitted using CollegeNET. At the same time, Foster Auditorium will be removed from the UCS list of reservable locations. Please note: all existing UCS reservations will be migrated to CollegeNET.

Please watch for an announcement of a future Tech Update that will provide an overview of both LibCal and CollegeNET.

– submitted by Ann Thompson and Jill Shockey

Strategic Plan in Action: 3D printing

3D printing, or additive manufacturing, has grown from a small scale novelty of engineers to a ubiquitous technology approaching affordability for anyone. You may see 3D printed objects included in arts and crafts, used to repair appliances and other household hardware, and even as parts of the car you drive.

3D printing can involve plastic, metal, or even living cells. The “additive” part of additive manufacturing means layers of material are slowly deposited on top of each other until a 3D object is produced.  These are “printed” from a 3D computer model, which can be created from simple shapes or a complex CAD drawing. Penn State graduates use 3D printing in their jobs
from Boeing aircraft to local manufacturing to high-tech startup companies.

Students are learning both the software and hardware skills in courses offered by the Colleges of Engineering, Liberal Arts, and many more.  In the past only architecture and engineering students had access to 3D printing for specific courses, but thanks to a partnership between the Libraries and ITS, it is available to all students, staff, and faculty.

The Maker Commons, located at University Park in Pattee Library’s Knowledge Commons, has been offering free 3D printing since the Spring of 2016. It serves all Penn State campuses through an online submission form and delivery throughout the state through our lending services.

The Strategic Planning Action Team of Joe Fennewald, Ryan Wetzel, Trace Brown, and John
Meier have tracked the successes and challenges of the Maker Commons and other makerspaces across the University Libraries.

Since its launch just over a year ago, the Maker Commons has produced over 2,000 objects per semester from the 32 MakerBot printers on site. The success rate of these prints has improved from 70% to 90%, through changes including a weight limit for non-class projects. Almost half of the printouts each semester are for class-specific assignments from the Colleges of IST, Engineering, Arts and Architecture, and EMS. There were also a number of classes from Commonwealth Campuses using the Maker Commons for student projects.

Indeed, 3D printing and scanning technology have a large and growing presence throughout the Libraries.  In the Spring of 2017, the Harrell Health Sciences Library in Hershey dedicated its renovated Research and Learning Commons with twin 3D printers, virtual reality headsets, and other new technology.

Penn State Wilkes-Barre has offered free 3D printing to their local campus community since 2015.  Penn State Hazleton Library has offered 3D printing and makerspace programs since 2014 in conjunction with course curricula and campus activities.  Penn State Mont Alto Library also has a 3D resin printer from Formlabs. Penn State Schuylkill Library has a 3D printer (MakerBot 5th generation replicator) as well as a NextEngine 3D scanner. The Engineering
Library at University Park has a portable 3D scanner to create models of real
world objects.

Other Commonwealth Campuses and University Park branch libraries are exploring possible makerspaces tailored to their unique user needs.  The Maker Commons is also constantly improving their procedures for faster output and more efficient use of material. We are “making” the future at Penn State in the University Libraries.

– submitted by John Meier

Focus on Assessment: Summer 2017

Well, summer 2017 was yet another one that seemed to go by in a flash. Now that the new term is in session, it’s time to share some of what the Assessment Department has been up to and where we’re headed. In addition to consulting with many of you on projects — from conducting your own UX studies to assessing services — we’ve also been busy working to move the Libraries forward in a number of areas.

Some highlights from 2017 include:

  • UX work on Scholarsphere, subject library web pages, and assessing the new budget request system.
  • The Ithaka Survey of Undergraduates conducted in spring 2016, continues to provide additional insights about our undergraduate population. Susan Lane, as part of a job enrichment opportunity, continues to mine the data for insights relative to international students.
  • A study of international undergraduate students and what contributes to their feelings of belonging in our spaces was completed in spring, led by Diversity Resident Librarian Alia Gant, and Library Assessment Graduate Assistant Chao Su. Together they led a team of researchers to learn what we as Libraries do to promote a sense of belonging. They interviewed 27 library personnel across seven campuses, and conducted focus groups across three campuses to learn from the student perspective what Libraries can do to contribute a sense of belonging. For those interested, an internal report is available.
  • Both of the international undergraduate focused projects were used to develop a comprehensive report about what we know about the needs of our international student population and presented to Mark Mattson, Global Partnership and Outreach librarian. Mark has a number of activities and events planned for the upcoming term informed in part by report contents. We hope to share some of what we’ve learned in a forum later this fall.
  • Reporting out from our organization is complicated due to the many locations, systems, and oddities of our collections. To begin evaluating our processes for reporting with an eye toward improving accuracy & efficiencies, Sherry Roth and Lana Munip have teamed up to develop a database of reporting procedures. This project has the potential to reduce time and complexities in external reporting and improve the overall accuracy of the values we report.
  • In order to know how we’re doing we need to know how we’ve done in the past, and how we compare historically with peers. To that end we have compiled 10 years of key ARL data for the PSUL and our BTAA peers. We have also developed a 2015-2016 snapshot that includes rankings across the statistical categories. Now we’re working to get the data loaded to our web page so you can make use of it.

Looking forward, we’re going to continue to mine data from the Ithaka Survey of Undergraduates 2016, looking at subsets of responses for various purposes, including responses from engineering students, first-generation students, and overall responses to Information Literacy and other questions in the “Undergraduate Research” module. We plan to conduct a number of UX projects focused on aspects of our web presence. We are ramping up in preparation for reporting out to ARL, ACRL, & IPEDS, in addition to conducting the Library Inventory Report. We’ll continue with our benchmarking and visualization work.  We have some exciting plans to collaborate with colleagues at Montana State University around participatory design, which will culminate in a research project with first-generation students, and we are getting ready to begin work relative to building a library data warehouse.

This may seem like quite a full plate for a small office, but we like what we do so we’ll manage.

If you have assessment questions, or project ideas that you’d like help and would like to set up a consultation, reach out to anyone in the Assessment Department. We’ll be happy to work with you.

– submitted by Steve Borrelli

Pattee Library, Paterno Library initiate pilot of large digital screens

vertical image of large digital screen showing library information including upcoming events, available computers, and today and tomorrow's hours

The first phase of the digital signage pilot program includes static sign information with frequently refreshed computer availability and time and weather data.

A Digital Signage task force chaired by Kimlyn Patishnock, senior director of administrative and financial services, recently has been examining the University Libraries’ next phase of digital signage.

A pilot program began at the start of the Fall 2017 semester with the installation of two large, freestanding digital screens at the two main entrances of Pattee Library and Paterno Library near each welcome desk.

Each of the screens is installed vertically in orientation and displays the current time, weather information, the current day and next day’s hours of operation, computer availability by floor, as well as brief information about next five library events.

Prior to the screens’ rollout and screen content’s design, the task force sought user experience research from the Libraries’ Assessment Department.

The screens are touchscreen capable, and future phases of design during the pilot will explore interactive uses of the screen and its information.


CANCELED: Meet ‘Lair of the Lion’ authors Lee Stout and Harry West at Fan Fest

Update, Sept. 13: Unfortunately, the Fan Fest event has been canceled

Football fans who will be attending the Sept. 16 game against Georgia State University are able to meet Lee Stout and Harry H. West, authors of Lair of the Lion: A History of Beaver Stadium, at the PSU Press Fan Fest tent.

book cover, title "Lair of the Lion: A History of Beaver Stadium," by Lee Stout and Harry H. WestFeaturing more than 200 photos, Lair of the Lion is the first-ever history of the home of the Nittany Lions. It includes a look at the current stadium’s predecessors, “Old” Beaver Field, built in 1893 on a site northeast of Old Main, and “New” Beaver Field, built on the northwest corner of campus in 1909. The book, written by two longtime Penn Staters, Librarian Emeritus Lee Stout and Professor Emeritus of Civil Engineering Harry H. West, was published in July by Penn State University Press.

Stout and West will be available to meet people and sign copies of the book from 5:00-6:30 p.m. on Sept. 16.

Lair of the Lion is available online from psupress.org, or at the following local State College retailers: Ace Hardware, The Corner Room, The Family Clothesline, Harper’s, Lion’s Pride, McLanahan’s Penn State Room, Old State Clothing, Rapid Transit Sports, The Student Book Store, and the Tavern Restaurant.

– submitted by Cate Fricke

Libraries receives Gen. Beaver’s Civil War PA 148th regiment history volume

horizontal photo of four women standing behind rare book displayed on podium

Athena Jackson, Dorothy Foehr Huck Chair and Head of Special Collections (far left), and Jackie Esposito, University archivist (far right), receive Gen. James A. Beaver’s “The Story of our Regiment: A History of the 148th Pennsylvania Volunteers” from sisters Stephanie Dinges Bender and Cathy Dinges Torsell.

Sisters Stephanie Dinges Bender and Cathy Dinges Torsell presented a unique copy of Gen. James A. Beaver’s “The Story of our Regiment: A History of the 148th Pennsylvania Volunteers” to the Special Collections Library on Wednesday, Aug. 9. The item was donated from the estate of their parents, Robert H. and Edith Hopple Dinges of Bellefonte, Pa.

This volume of the regimental history was presented by Gen. Beaver to his wife, Mary McAllister Beaver, and was inscribed “To my dear wife, Mary McAllister Beaver, With the love of her husband James A. Beaver, Bellefonte, Pa 8 April 1905.”

In addition to serving in the U.S. Civil War as Commander of the 148th Pennsylvania Volunteers, Beaver was President of the Penn State Board of Trustees for two terms (1874-1882 and 1898-1914), acting President of the College from 19096 to 1908 and is the namesake for the University’s football stadium. Beaver also served the Commonwealth of Pennsylvania as its 20th Governor (1887-1891).

For additional information about this unique donation, contact the Eberly Family Special Collections Library at ul-spcolref@lists.psu.edu or 814-865-1793.


Technical Services Department celebrates annual service awards

group photo with 32 people standing on steps outside library; text on photo: "Penn State University Libraries Tech Services Department Group Photo - 2017"

Members of the Department gathered on July 13 to honor colleagues for many
years of service to the University Libraries:

John Hamilton – 30 years; Sharon Smith – 30 years; Valerie Allen – 25 years;
Rob Freeborn – 20 years; Jaime Jamison – 15 years; Sara Hassinger -10 years;
Bei Jiang – 10 years; Steve Kroger – 10 years; Anne Belden – 5 years; Leah
Oakes – 5 years; Kim Warren – 5 years.

We thank them for all that they do to acquire and make our research
collections discoverable!

– submitted by Ann Copeland

Fall 2017 map and geospatial sessions

Fall 2017 Map and Geospatial Sessions

This Fall 2017, four open map and geospatial sessions will be offered to Penn State students (undergraduate and graduate), staff, faculty and beyond around foundational geospatial topics. Please share with associated departments as we encourage participation across disciplines and campus locations. All sessions have in-person offerings, along with an available remote viewing option using Zoom. In addition to these sessions, individualized and group research consultations are available.

Geospatial Data: Diving into library resources and beyond
Tuesday, Oct. 10, 3:30 -4:30 p.m., 211A Pattee Library

This session will provide an overview of geospatial data available from library databases, PolicyMap, SimplyAnalytics, Social Explorer, and Data-Planet. Additional United States and International organizations will be highlighted from maps and geospatial guides, and related resources to guide the user in locating geospatial data relevant to multiple disciplines. Participants will be encouraged to create their own map visualizations with mapping applications during the session.

Geospatial Exploration: Explore mapping and location topics and applications
Tuesday, Oct. 17, 3:30-4:30 p.m., 211A Pattee Library

This session provides an overview of geographic information systems (GIS) concepts relevant to applying geospatial components in projects. This session will provide an introduction to geospatial data, introductory topics of projects, data manipulation, and geoprocessing techniques

Geospatial Analysis: Introduction to working with location data and demographic data
Tuesday, Oct. 24, 3:30-4:30 p.m., 302 Paterno Library

This session will provide an introduction to using ArcMap software to work with location data and demographic data. This session will work with sample data; however, participants are encouraged to consider and/or use their own data based on research, work, and/or teaching interests. This session will demonstrate general processes of working with location-based data, which may require additional instruction and follow-up in specific contexts, geographic regions, and disciplines.

Geospatial Online: Overview of Online mapping options (ArcGIS Online and more)
Tuesday, Oct. 31, 3:30-4:30 p.m., Location: 211A Pattee Library

This session provides an introduction to ArcGIS Online, a web mapping application which can be used to communicate many spatial research interests across the disciplines. Participants will explore applications created with ArcGIS Online and work with a sample dataset for Centre County, PA to learn the functionality of ArcGIS Online web maps and applications.

– submitted by Tara LaLonde, GIS Specialist, Donald W. Hamer Center for Maps and Geospatial Information


Customer service tip of the week: Make directions easy to follow

by Carmen Gass

Shared from Jeff Toister of Toister Performance Solutions, Inc.:

It shouldn’t be hard to do business with your company. This week’s tip is
about making things easier for your customers.

Make Directions Easy to Follow

Many of us have to give driving directions to a customer or show customers
how to walk to a particular place within our store, restaurant, or hotel.
Here are two great ways to do that.

Driving Directions
Verbal directions can get confusing after three steps, so offer your
customers a map or set of written directions instead. This is very helpful
even if you have to draw a map or write down the turns on a piece of paper.
Make sure you provide some visual cues to help your customers know they are
on track, such as “You’ll see a gas station on the right. That’s Ash street –
turn right there.”

Walking Directions
Whenever possible, walk your customer to their destination yourself so they
won’t get lost and you can offer extra assistance. If you can’t do this, give
them clear, concise directions and visual cues just like you would if they
were driving. Write it down if it takes more than three steps so your
customer doesn’t get confused! Bonus Info: One challenge with verbal-only
directions is that information can quickly fade from our short-term memory. Take
this fun challenge (https://faculty.washington.edu/chudler/stm0.html) to see.

Tech Tip: How to enroll a new smartphone in 2FA

by Ryan Johnson

How to Enroll a New Smartphone in 2FA

Follow the instructions below if you get a new smartphone and need to reinstall 2FA:

  1. Install the Duo app on your new phone from your app store.
  2. Login to psu.edu on your computer.
  3. Select Re-activate Duo Mobile on the Manage Device Screen for your mobile device.
  4. Open the Duo App on your phone and select Next on the Reactivate Duo Mobile screen.
  5. Scan the code that appears on your computer with your phone.

Your smartphone will be setup and ready to go for 2FA.


Events: Sept. 13

Fall 2017
Academic calendar information for all campuses is available online.

horizontal exhibit graphic for The Painted Photograph: Selections from the B & H Henisch Photo-History Collection, extended through September 30, 2017, room 201A Pattee Library, displays five black-and-white historic photo portraits and their encased frames


Extended! Now through Saturday, Sept. 30, “The Painted Photograph: Selections from the B. & H. Henisch Photo-History Collection exhibit,” Pattee Library operating hours, Paterno Family Reading Room, 201A Pattee Library, University Park.



Tuesday–Friday, Sept. 12-15: Penn State Fall Career Days, 11 a.m.-4 p.m., Bryce Jordan Center, University Park.

Thursday–Friday, Sept. 14-15: Library Development Board Fall Committee Meetings, Pattee Library and Paterno Library, University Park.

Thursday, Sept. 14: Libraries Donor Reception and Celebration, 5:30-8 p.m., by invitation, Paterno Family Humanities Reading Room will be closed prior to and following event, University Park.

Friday, Sept. 15-Sunday, Oct. 15: Hispanic Heritage Month, United States.

Monday–Wednesday, Sept. 18-20: 2nd World Open Educational Resources (OER) Congress, Ljubljana, Slovenia.

Tuesday, Sept. 19: “Into the Abode of Death,” Penn State Reads-affiliated talk by global explorer Mark Evans, Foster Auditorium, 4-7 p.m., 102 Paterno Library, University Park, and livestreamed via Mediasite Live.

Sept. 20-22: Rosh Hashanah.

Thursday-Saturday, Sept. 21-30: Navaratri.

Sept. 22-24: Family Weekend, Penn State Altoona.

Thursday, Sept. 28: Lynd Ward Prize event honoring author of Rolling Blackouts, Sarah Glidden, 5:30-8 p.m., Foster Auditorium, 102 Paterno Library, University Park and livestreamed via Mediasite Live.

Saturday, Sept. 30: Yom Kippur.

Wednesday, Oct. 4: Docunight: Iran via Documentaries, 7 p.m. Foster Auditorium, 102 Paterno Library, University Park.

Tuesday, Oct. 10: Geospatial Data: Diving into library resources and beyond, 3:30-4:30 p.m., 211A Pattee Library and online via Zoom.

Wednesday, Oct. 11: University Libraries 25-Year Service Awards, 3:30-4:30 p.m.,Foster Auditorium and/or Mann Assembly Room, 102/103 Paterno Library, University Park, final location to be determined. 

Wednesday, Oct. 11: National Coming Out Day, part of National Coming Out Week at Penn State, details TBA.

Thursday, Oct. 12: Lee Bennett Hopkins Award event honoring authors Jorge Argueta (winner) & Nikki Grimes (honor winner), hosted by Pennsylvania Center for the Book, Foster Auditorium, 102 Paterno Library, University Park.

Friday–Sunday, Oct. 13-15: Parents and Families Weekend, University Park.

Tuesday, Oct. 17: Geospatial Exploration: Explore mapping and location topics and applications, 3:30-4:30 p.m., 211A Pattee Library and online via Zoom.

Wednesday, Oct. 18: Promotion and Tenure Recognition Reception, 4:30-6:30 p.m., Paterno Family Humanities Reading Room, University Park.

Wednesday, Oct. 18: Tech Update, by I-Tech, 2-3 p.m., Mann Assembly Room, 103 Paterno Library, University Park.

Thursday, Oct. 19: Diwali, Hindu festival of lights, celebrated.

Tuesday, Oct. 24: Geospatial Analysis:Introduction to working with location data and demographic data, 3:30-4:30 p.m., 302 Paterno Library and online via Zoom.

Wednesday, Oct. 25: “What the Libraries Can Do for You,” library resources talk for Penn State faculty and staff, Foster Auditorium, 102 Paterno Library, University and livestreamed via Mediasite Live.

Tuesday, Oct. 31: Geospatial Online: Overview of Online mapping options (ArcGIS Online and more)3:30-4:30 p.m., 211A Pattee Library and online via Zoom.

Wednesday, Nov. 1: Docunight: Iran via Documentaries, 7 p.m. Foster Auditorium, 102 Paterno Library, University Park.

Sunday–Sunday, Nov. 5-12: Penn State Military Appreciation Week and Homecoming Week.

Monday, Nov. 6–Saturday, Dec. 16: NLM/NIH Traveling Exhibit: Opening Doors: Contemporary African American Surgeons, Life Sciences Library, 4th floor Paterno Library.

Saturday, Nov. 11: Veterans Day.

Monday–Friday, Nov. 13-17: International Education Week, details TBA.

Tuesday, Nov. 14: Penn State GIS Day, 1:30-5 p.m. speakers and lightning talks with 9 a.m.-5 p.m. poster display, Pattee Library and Paterno Library, University Park.

Nov. 19-25: Thanksgiving week break, no classes Nov. 20-24.

Thursday, Nov. 23: Thanksgiving Day holiday.

Wednesday, Dec. 6: Docunight: Iran via Documentaries, 7 p.m. Foster Auditorium, 102 Paterno Library, University Park.

Friday, Dec. 8: Last day of fall classes. 

Sunday–Tuesday, Dec. 10-12: De-Stress Fest, University Park locations.

Tuesday, Dec. 12: Tech Update, by I-Tech, 10-11 a.m., Mann Assembly Room, 103 Paterno Library, University Park.

Tuesday–Wednesday, Dec. 12-20: Hanukkah.

Saturday, Dec. 16: Fall commencement, University Park and other Penn State campuses; details and speaker information at multiple Penn State campuses TBA in December.

Please submit event information — and all Library News submissions — to Public Relations and Marketing via the Library News submission form.